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Billy Sherwood - Live In Japan (with Tony Kaye) CD (album) cover


Billy Sherwood


Crossover Prog

3.09 | 3 ratings

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Symphonic Team
3 stars Circa 50 %

This show was recorded in Japan in 2011 and features material from Billy Sherwood's and Tony Kaye's careers in and out of Yes and beyond. In addition to Sherwood on guitars and vocals and Kaye on keyboards there are no other musicians credited, but luckily there is also drums played by an unknown player. Nonetheless, these performances are still somewhat stripped down (though not as much as I feared) and laid back compared to what we would expect from Yes and from Billy's and Tony's band Circa.

Eight Yes songs are performed spanning the two men's respective times in the band from 1970's Time And A Word to 1999's The Ladder (I Could is an alternate version of the first half of Finally from The Ladder). It is especially nice to see songs from Talk, Union, and Open Your Eyes being performed live as these albums are rarely represented in Yes' own set lists and not many songs from these albums have appeared on Yes' official live releases. Roundabout from Fragile and Wondrous Stories from Going For The One are somewhat surprising choices given that neither Kaye nor Sherwood originally played on those two Yes albums. (Kaye did however perform Roundabout live with the band in the 80's and 90's and Billy recorded a cover version of Wondrous Stories with his band World Trade for the Yes tribute album Tales From Yesterday in 1995.)

In addition to Yes material, we also get a couple of songs each from Billy's collaborations with Chris Squire in Conspiracy and with Kaye in Circa. There is one song from World Trade's 1995 album Euphoria (co-written by Squire who also guested on that album) and also a couple of songs from Billy's 2003 solo album No Comment (but oddly nothing from any of his other solo albums; he had already five solo albums out by 2011). The Other Side is a song that Billy co-wrote for Toto and which originally appeared on that band's 1992 album Kingdom Of Desire. Kaye gets a solo spot which is a piano solo (including a snippet of Yes' Changes).

Overall, Live In Japan is a nice listen, but it is not an album that I think I will return to much. Circa's live releases better show what these two highly talented Yes-men can do together on stage.

SouthSideoftheSky | 3/5 |


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